What is energy? Clients always want to know this. I’ve been saying that it’s a natural field produced by living cells, and in the East it’s called chi or prana.

But this didn’t give any sense of what energy really is. It didn’t produce any familiarity. And unsure clients remained unsure.

Tiffany and I spent some time figuring out how to explain energy to lay people who aren’t familiar with chi or prana. How to connect it to things they already know, to create a sense of familiarity.

My answer is below. The normal text is what I say to prospective clients, and the text in italics are notes for you, explaining why I say it that way, so you can think about your own answer to, “What is energy?”

Energy, or chi, is produced by living cells. It pools around those cells, and affects the cells bathed in it.

It took me a long time to find this. I initially wanted to define energy, but it was so difficult and technical. Then I thought about magnetism, and how the answer to “what is magnetism” is always “a force that attracts metal objects,” that is, a description of what magnetism does, not a true definition of what it is. I realized this was the best approach to explaining energy, too.

Healthy cells produce healthy chi. Inflamed cells produce inflamed chi. Arthritic cartilage produces arthritic chi. And so on.

If your knee is inflamed, it’s producing inflamed chi, which pools in your knee. Bathing in that inflamed chi isn’t good for the cells of your knee.

You can learn to move your own chi. If you’ve ever taken a tai chi class, the chi in tai chi refers to this energy. Same for chi gung. Those classes typically include physical exercise, along with exercises for moving your chi.

I specialize in arthritis. Most of my clients are over 50 and have never heard of chi. But they’ve taken tai chi and chi gung classes. These classes are familiar. By connecting to those classes, they realize they actually have heard of chi, and energy healing becomes easier to understand.

Energy healing uses more advanced techniques:

I’ve learned to use the chi of my body to read the chi of other people’s bodies. When I work with someone who has arthritis, I touch their joint, move my awareness to the edge of my energy field, and read the energy of their cartilage, bursa, nerves, and other tissues. Reading their chi helps me discern the correct healing techniques to use.

I’ve also learned to use the chi of my body to adjust the chi of someone else’s body. For example, when working with arthritis, I adjust the chi around the cartilage to be similar to the chi of a child’s cartilage, so the client’s cartilage is bathing in young, healthy chi. Clients are responding very well to this.

I used to talk about “applying the energy adjustment.” But that’s so abstract. People would ask how I do it, what actually happens. By talking about the chi of my body, it’s concrete. You could imagine it happening like a movie. I skip details like ethereal software because my goal isn’t to enable the listener to do the techniques, just to have a general understanding of what I’m doing.

Energy healing acts on the cells of the body, and works whether you believe in it or not. And it can be used in conjunction with surgery, drugs, and all other Western medical care.

Energy healing has been well-researched since the 1970s, with excellent results in placebo-controlled trials and other studies. Learn more.

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